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CFP: Activists' Engagements in the Creation of Alternative, Autonomous, Radical and Independent Media.

Via Laurence Cox:

Interface ? A Journal For and About Social Movements

Call for papers ? vol. 2 issue 2:

Voices of Dissent. Activists' Engagements in the
Creation of Alternative, Autonomous, Radical and Independent Media.

Interface is a new journal produced twice yearly
by activists and academics around the world in
response to the development and increased
visibility of social movements in the last few
years ? and the immense amount of knowledge
generated in this process. This knowledge is
created across the globe, and in many contexts
and a variety of ways, and it constitutes an
incredibly valuable resource for the further
development of social movements. Interface
responds to this need, as a tool to help our
movements learn from each other?s struggles, by
developing analyses and knowledge that allow
lessons to be learned from specific movement
processes and experiences and translated into a
form useful for other movements.

We welcome contributions by movement participants
and academics who are developing
movement-relevant theory and research. Our goal
is to include material that can be used in a
range of ways by movements ? in terms of its
content, its language, its purpose and its form.
We are seeking work in a range of different
formats, such as conventional articles, review
essays, facilitated discussions and interviews,
action notes, teaching notes, key documents and
analysis, book reviews ? and beyond. Both
activist and academic peers review research
contributions, and other material is
sympathetically edited by peers. The editorial
process generally will be geared towards
assisting authors to find ways of expressing
their understanding, so that we all can be heard
across geographical, social and political distances.

Our fourth issue, to be published in November
2010
, will have space for general articles on all
aspects of understanding social movements, as
well as a special themed section on Voices of
Dissent. Activists Engagements in the Creation of
Alternative, Autonomous, Radical and Independent Media.

In the last decades, there has been a
considerable amount of both activist and academic
publications on alternative, radical, autonomous,
and independent media. Keeping in mind the broad
range of alternative, radical, autonomous and
independent sites of media production and
consumption, this issue of Interface intends to
engage critical knowledge about media practices
developed in social movement contexts all around
the world. The primary goal of our journal is to
contribute to the development of knowledge "from
and for" social movements and encourage dialogue
between movement participants and outside
researchers. Thus we ask for contributions which
are able to cross the separation between the
movement and academic milieu when addressing the
topic of alternative media in contemporary
societies, underlining both theoretical and
practical challenges that developing alternative
media
pose nowadays. In particular, we encourage
contributions that explore some crucial questions
which can further develop activist and academic
literature about alternative, independent, radical and autonomous media.

A crucial topic is related, for instance, to the
symbolic and material places and sites of the
media environment where alternative media develop
today: for instance, what is the nature of the
interactions between a profit-oriented online
platform such as Facebook and the alternative
media messages
which are sometime spread though
it? This and other similar questions in the field
remain unanswered. The proliferation of cheap
and easy-to-use technological devices make it
easy for everyone taking part in a demonstration
to record and then spread the demonstration
itself. It would be interesting to explore how
these increasingly common practices impact the
idea and the role of ?media-activism?. With the
flourishing and spread of information and
communication technologies in particular many
activist media practitioners and progressive
academics have focused on the use of such new
technologies in social movements. Alternative,
radical, autonomous and independent media
messages, however, are still produced and
diffused using a variety of different
technologies - from the press to the internet to
rudimentary broadcast stations. There are
community radios and radical magazines, street
televisions and alternative stickers. They often
intertwine and produce hybrid spaces of
communication which are worth continuing to
explore worldwide. In short, some of the
questions we would like to address are:

? What are the places and sites in the
media environment where alternative media develop today?

? Does it still make sense to speak about
?media activists? in a technology-saturated
environment? Who are today?s media activists and,
more broadly speaking, who are the alternative
media practitioners and how are they connected to different social movements?

? How are traditional media (radio,
magazines, television, print) used as alternative
means of communication nowadays? Are there
instances of media convergence in this respect?
What effects does this have on the communication
practices
of existing social movements?

? What are the challenges, problems and
issues that alternative media have raised and
still raise within the social movement milieu?

? Do alternative media present a
gender-neutral context? Or, are alternative media
practices embedded in the same patriarchal
discourse that envelops mainstream media?

? Do technical criteria and the logics of
media production necessarily win out in the long
run over questions of alternative production
processes and attempts to treat media as the voice of people in struggle?

We particularly encourage the submission of
articles originated from practical-critical
activity and engagement with movement media. We
welcome especially "action notes", "teaching
notes", activist interviews and good practice
pieces which can help media activists learn from
each other's struggles. This list of questions is
not exhaustive, but it is merely meant as a set
of potential topics. Other perspectives on
alternative media are welcome and encouraged.

For more details on Interface, please see our
website at www.interfacejournal.net, particularly
the "Guidelines for contributors". The deadline
for initial submissions to this issue (vol. 2 no.
2, to be published Nov 1st 2010) is May 1st 2010.

Department of Sociology
National University of Ireland, Maynooth
Co. Kildare
Republic of Ireland

Tel. (+353-1) 708 3985
email: laurence.cox@nuim.ie

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